The curtains are closing on popular local group Coasterettes who have been entertaining for a quarter of a century.

"After 25 years we're getting a bit older," group member Margaret Simpson said.

"We all feel very sad but it's also time. We've got a heck of a lot of memories.

"It's time for us to move on so younger people can pick up the idea and reinvent to suit the times."


The group has been entertaining at retirement villages, rest homes, RSAs, social clubs and more.

"Our programme is musical review songs that people can relate to.

"We're a singing group and take musical theatre directly to the homes and social clubs."

The group, which likes to dress up, also includes skits and other elements to their shows.

"We perform between June and August but it takes us from February to June to learn what we're doing."

Their current show is aptly called Always Look On The Bright Side.

Margaret said there had been many highlights over the years, including one when they performed at an Alzheimer's unit where an elderly man took a keen interest.

"He played every note of the accompaniment on his knees.


"He knew the music, and had obviously been a pianist, and a very good one, and it brought back stuff to his brain."

Coasterettes, which is a Wellington Airport Regional Community Awards Kāpiti finalist, was started by Helen McLeod who had been part of a group entertaining in the Hutt Valley.

She thought a similar group would work in Kāpiti so Coasters Musical Theatre gave it its backing.

"It certainly grew over the years," Margaret said.

"We've had up to 21 outings in a season.

"From these shows we get donations and put that back into the community.


"We estimate that over 25 years we've put about $20,000 in the community."

The group's first pianist was Joyce Pond, followed by Caroline Lonsdale who has been with the group for an impressive 23 years.

And the group's producers have been Helen McLeod, Lorraine Boyd, Jean Chamberlain, and Margaret Simpson.

"Some of the members have been in the group for at least 20 years, others are more recent," Margaret said.

Coasterettes finish up in August but are doing doing a farewell concert for close supporters at Coasters Musical Theatre, Hinemoa St, Paraparaumu, on July 19.

"That will be a fun night."